Brigg Town Council last night (Monday, November 25) discussed the concept of a Neighbourhood Plan (NP) for our community, and a Brigg Town Planning Forum.
In the Government's own words: "A neighbourhood development plan establishes general planning policies for the development and use of land in a neighbourhood, like: Where new homes and offices should be built what they should look like. The plan can be detailed or general, depending what local people want."
Coun The Rev Alec Depledge, Deputy Town Mayor, gave a well-received introduction to his colleagues at their monthly meeting in the Angel Suite. His comments were well received....
|Coun The Rev Alec Depledge, who played a central role in establishing the Community-Led Plan for Brigg and who last night spoke about Neighbourhood Planning.|
Mr Chairman, councillors -
For many months the subject of Neighbourhood Planning has bobbled around, on and off agendas, either in Full Council or in Committees, without being resolved. I must confess to a certain vacillation during that time – arising from reservations to do with timing, cost and motivation, and while some of those reservations remain I have concluded that a decision in favour of a Neighbourhood Plan will go some way in showing this Council’s commitment towards delivery of the Community-led Plan.
Let me explain: As architects of the Community-led Plan (CLP) we anticipated the possibility of a NP, indeed this is referred to by name in several places. The CLP (in section 4.4) also calls specifically for the formation of a “Brigg Town Planning Forum”, which will draw up “an integrated planning approach document” covering potential areas of development, appropriate types of development, and will especially consider impact of such development on the existing infrastructure and facilities, as well as maintaining the essential ‘character’ of Brigg as a historic market town.
In line, therefore, with that key proposal of the CLP, I wish to support Cllr. Waltham’s proposal that BTC initiates a Neighbourhood Plan, and to facilitate this I propose further that BTC establishes a “Town Planning Forum” whose responsibility will be to fully research, apply for and produce a Neighbourhood Plan. Members of this Forum, as the Community-led Plan suggests, should be drawn from among elected representatives of BTC and NLC, along with other stakeholders/interested parties, and be held fully accountable by this Council.
My proposal allows for members of the community, not only to have a strong voice through consultation, but also to actively participate in the formulating of their own Neighbourhood Plan – surely the key idea behind Neighbourhood Planning in the first instant
My proposal will also, it is hoped, take the workload away from our Full Council and staff, and place it firmly on the shoulders of the Forum, whose members will be suitably committed to the task.
Finally, Mr Chairman, I believe this is not simply about my own present generation, but also concerns the leaving of a legacy which will be of benefit to our children and grandchildren. Therefore I commend this proposal to Council. Thank you.
NF ADDS: Neighbourhood planning was introduced through the Localism Act 2011. Neighbourhood planning legislation came into effect in April 2012. In May this year the Government introduced a £9.5 million, 2-year programme to support communities to progress their Neighbourhood Development Plans and Neighbourhood Development Orders. It says: "The programme will offer hands-on, practical support and grants of up to £7,000 per neighbourhood area."
View the handy Government guide to Neighbourhood Plans here